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5 pro tips for citizen developers starting out with Power Apps

In this article our pro developers share some tips with budding citizen developers looking to start their journey with Power Apps.


Power Apps is Microsoft’s low code application development platform. It comes with 100’s of connectors and templates available out of the box, a simple drag and drop editor and a marketplace full of applications.


It’s the perfect tool for anyone looking to  improve how things work in their part of the business. Here are our 5 pro tips to help your Power App project be more successful.


5 pro tips for citizen developers

  1. Get to know Power Apps first

The key message behind this tip is to spend a bit of time familiarising yourself with what’s possible. There are lots of training videos, workshops and learning paths available. The more time you invest in this upfront the more successful you will be

  1. Start small

Knowing where to start is key. You don’t want to attempt something to complicated. If you start with something small and in an area where you are a subject matter expert you are most likely to be successful. Looking for a simple but manual or paper process to start with.

  1. Consider the audience/users of the app

A key design approach is required, who will use the app? What are their skills? What do they need the app to do? Ensuring you think these things through from the get go will mean your app is more likely to get used.

  1. Think about the data

Data is a key component to any application. With Power Apps you can use Spreadsheets, Dataverse or even a SharePoint list as a database, but you must ensure you know what data you need. Where are you getting the data? How are you storing it, and is the quality of the data correct?

  1. Testing

Ensure your application is tested. By testing we do mean, putting a number of cases through the process, thinking about the different scenarios available and trying them out. A top tip is to get someone who didn’t help you develop the app to try it out and make sure they can use it.


These are our top 5 tips for citizen developers working with Power Apps. Power Apps are a great tool for any organisation and there are huge success stories from all across the globe of  employees with no software engineering skills, making apps that to improve their organisation. Here are 3 great examples of Power Apps.


Are you ready to find out more? Check out our Power Platform guide for more information. Or discover our full range of Power Platform services here.


I'm trying to move Access data, relationships, queries, and reports into PowerApps. There's no clear relationship link. Any ideas about how I can make this leap from really old-school software to PowerApps? Thanks!!

Hi David,


Using Dataverse, you can use the Get Data option to retrieve data from a number of resources, with Access Database being one of them. Once you have the data in Dataverse you can then use it to develop reports and apps.

Meet Our Blog Authors
  • PowerApps Community Mentor 2018, Practicing surgeon and former Professor of Surgery, University of Illinois, Chicago.
  • Jill of All Trades (Power Apps, SharePoint, PowerShell, Exchange, Power Automate and odds & ends of assorted other things)
  • I am the Owner/Principal Architect at Don't Pa..Panic Consulting. I've been working in the information technology industry for over 30 years, and have played key roles in several enterprise SharePoint architectural design review, Intranet deployment, application development, and migration projects. I've been a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) 12 consecutive years and am also a Microsoft Certified SharePoint Masters (MCSM) since 2013.
  • I'm Tim Leung - a PowerApps builder. In addition to PowerApps, my main interests include building software with SQL Server and Microsoft .NET. I'm the author of 'Beginning PowerApps' - the first published book on PowerApps. You can buy this from Amazon and other leading bookstores.
  • Systems developer
  • My name is Timothy Shaw and I create digital solutions using the Power Platform, Office 365, and Azure SQL and handle the IT for a small company in the energy sector. When not building the future :), I enjoy playing guitar, good (or really bad!) sci-fi, Xbox therapy, and hanging with my wife and son. Twitter: @ShortForTim